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? Seattle Medicinal Clinic's modest Tacoma location, open for the past five months, is misleadingly named. It isn't a "clinic"; it's a medical-marijuana collective. But

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Seattle Medicinal Clinic's Nurse Ratched: Why You'll Go Cuckoo For This Cannabis Strain

With a name like Nurse Ratched, one might reasonably expect this weed would be the cannabis equivalent of electroshock. But it was a much kinder and gentler strain than its sadistic namesake. Maybe the Ratched association comes instead from the preternatural sense of medicated calm (along with pain relief) that enveloped me after just two tokes of this superlative indica.

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?Seattle Medicinal Clinic's modest Tacoma location, open for the past five months, is misleadingly named. It isn't a "clinic"; it's a medical-marijuana collective. But the "medicinal" part is accurate, as it boasts a good selection of flowers for such a small space.

Another thing that makes SMC Tacoma an inviting place to get cannabis is something it doesn't advertise: It's right across Pacific Avenue from The Green Warehouse (reviewed in last week's Toke Signals). So if you're the kind of patient who likes to visit two shops on one trip and do a little comparison shopping, you've found your spot.

Budtender Omar, who was also manning the front desk, was quick to show me around the small bud room. Packed with about a dozen strains of cannabis, it featured ready-rolled blunts for $10, a few varieties of hash at $20 a gram, a modest selection of edibles at $5, and several different flavors of Green Lady medicated soda at $10 a pop.

The majority of the strains in stock the day I visited were priced at $10 a gram, with a few $12 varieties also available. Six-Buck Chuck was available for the budget-minded, and there were a couple of attractive deals on TrainWreck and White Widow, two

sterling strains each on sale for $8 a gram.

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Nurse Ratched: Shockingly good; preternatural calm
?Ever the bargain hunter, I decided to try a few grams of TrainWreck, a reliable sativa dominant bred from Afghani, Thai, Mexican, and Colombian forebears. I've had a lot of the 'Wreck, and these buds weren't going to win any beauty contests compared to their peers in other shops. These were smaller and ragged-looking and seemed to be from near the bottom of a jar, which of course may have explained why they were on sale for $8.

The proof's in the toking, though, so without getting hung up on the fact that the 'Wreck wasn't exactly centerfold material, I learned that it can't be fully appreciated until you smoke it. These homely little buds did the name proud, coming on fast and strong and leaving an unfocused but euphoric relaxation in their wake.

The other strain that caught my eye did so for two reasons. First, the name, Nurse Ratched, which I hadn't seen before unless you count One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. And second, once I had Omar get the jar down off the shelf for my inspection, these tight, moss-green flowers were absolutely gorgeous, coated in a thick, alluring coat of glistening trichomes on their sexily swollen calyxes.

With a name like Nurse Ratched, one might reasonably expect this weed would be the cannabis equivalent of electroshock. But it was a much kinder and gentler strain than its sadistic namesake. Maybe the Ratched association comes instead from the preternatural sense of medicated calm (along with pain relief) that enveloped me after just two tokes of this superlative indica.

Seattle Medicinal Clinic is open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week at 8236 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, in a brown building with mirror-tinted windows next to Ashley's Smoke and Art and straight across the street from AM/PM at 84th and Pacific. Don't bother with the website, seattlemedicinalclinic.com; it has no useful information whatsoever, with instructions like "[Insert sample text to begin:]." Instead, call them at 253-426-1037 or e-mail seattlemedicinalclinic@gmail.com.

Steve Elliott edits Toke of the Town, Village Voice Media's site of cannabis news, views, rumor, and humor.

Toke Signals wants to review your dispensary. E-mail tokesignals@gmail.com.

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